Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has staked his electoral hopes on pulling off a slight of hand – despite thirteen years of Conservative rule, his party conference speech in October proclaimed the need for change, and argued that he was the man to deliver it.
He now needs to back that up with action, and the King’s Speech today was his first opportunity.
Undeniably there were pieces of legislation announced that will shape the face and future of the UK, particularly in the technology sector.
But announcing that legislation will be introduced is just the tip of the iceberg. In the coming weeks organisations and companies interested in these issues will have an opportunity to influence the direction the government takes in implementing its vision.
Now is the time to proactively engage, and ensure that the Government’s approach is as conducive to your approach and requirements as possible.
And yet, stepping back from the bills above, much of this King’s Speech focused on issues that, regardless of one’s political views, are not necessarily those keeping the nation awake at night. Regulation of pedicabs in London and clamping down on ‘poor quality’ degrees, whilst important, are not the issues on which elections are won and lost.
Which ultimately highlights Rishi Sunak’s challenge. He has positioned himself as the change candidate, but his critics accuse his government of running out of steam. He now needs to prove them wrong, by driving real and meaningful change, the benefits of which the electorate can see.
The first King’s Speech in over seven decades may have felt like the start of a new royal era. The risk for the Prime Minister was that in its content, the King’s Speech may have felt like the end of a political one.